Saturday, July 19, 2014

GELibility + Regular Nail Polish = Gel Polish!

Today I have something really different and really fun to show you guys! It's called "GELibility", and it's a two-product system that gives you the ability to easily turn your favorite and hard-to-duplicate regular polishes into gel polish that you cure under your LED/UV lamp.  I've heard people wishing for a product like this--and I've heard whispers about this brand before--but I don't think I've heard of anyone that actually tried it out.  Not to mention, I know a somewhat similar idea called the "gelly sandwich" gel manicure (with gel base and top coat, and regular polish in between) is popular, but also pretty problematic on its own.   So when Brandi, the creator, gave me the opportunity to try this system out, of course I had to jump right in.

Let me start this review by telling you a little bit about how GELibility works from my small experiences so far--it's quite a bit different than the usual sandwiched gel/regular polish manicure:
  1. Start with the "Stick It! Soak Off Bonder", which needs to be cured under your lamp for the usual time.  This is your base coat, too--no need to use another brand of base and top coats!  But of course, if you have a system that really works for your nail chemistry, I'm sure you could combine them. 
  2. Mix up "Fix It! Soak Off Gel" and your regular nail polish.  Use a small palette, and with your brushes loaded with polish, drop equal spots onto your mixing surface.  GELibility says to use a 50/50 mix of gel and regular polish, but Brandi mentioned to me that a 60/40 ratio of regular polish to gel polish would work if you find your colors to be too sheer.  Remember, though: thin and slightly sheer coats is the aim to properly cure a gel polish.  Then, mix it up with the regular polish brush, or grab a nail painting brush--like a small filbert brush--to mix it if you are worried about preserving your regular nail polish (it shouldn't be an issue, though, it's only a very small amount of gel that will get mixed in.)
  3. Paint those nails! Cure between each layer, as usual.
  4. Once you're satisfied with the coverage, use the "Fix it! Soak Off Gel" as a top coat, without any regular polish mixed in. 
  5. Clean it all off with alcohol, and you've got a "regular nail polish" manicure with increased wear and without all the drying time!
Here's some pictures of what I mixed up with a regular polish I had laying around, OPI "Rally Pretty Pink"  This color is a warm gold and a duochrome, with a dark mauve jelly base loaded with irregular true gold flecks.  Although this is an older release, a color like this is really on trend for this year, but you can't find anything like it in gel polish form. I took a lot of pictures because, um, hello...duochrome makes my mouth water.  Click to make the last photo bigger for some macro glitter fleck action!

I used three coats of my Gelibility + "Rally Pretty Pink" mixture on my nails here. Compared to some plain regular polish swatches, my combo looks a bit lighter and the duochrome is a bit more muted--but it's still pretty obvious! In some lights you can see a bit of visible nail line, however I feel like you can pick out that in some regular polish swatches, too.  "Rally Pretty Pink" appears to rely on a translucent dark purple-mauve base to contrast with the gold flecks and give it its duochrome appearance, so when you apply the color thinly or mix it with something clear like Gelibility, the whole polish appears a little bit lighter.

Application of GELibility was really interesting, because I have to admit, I was a little skeptical at first.  I've heard horror stories about how long "gelly sandwich" manicures can take to dry, and how the regular polish layers can bubble or wrinkle if they are not properly dried before you apply a gel top coat.  I was really afraid of this happening--but for no reason!  Each coat cured perfectly with my LED light, without any wrinkles or bubbling from trying to mix up my polishes. While applying, I found that the resulting combination acted exactly like you would expect a hybrid of regular polish and gel to act--it seemed to thicken up a little bit the longer it was exposed to air, but it also cured hard in my LED light just like a normal gel would.   

How about the wear time?  This wore as long as most other gel polishes I've tried so far--it lasted about nine days, or I gave it about that time before I wanted to paint my nails again.  And yes, it was totally dry once cured--I could do the dishes right after painting my nails with no smudges!  One thing I do have to mention is that despite my manicure being 5 layers of gel, it still felt thin for a gel polish--although it wasn't so thin that it caused my nails to bend and crack easily.

So despite the fact that my regular nail polish appeared to become a tad bit sheerer with GELibility mixed in, I'm still incredibly impressed and want to experiment some more!

PS: Currently you can buy Gelibility from their website, for $37.95 for the set of two. I received mine complimentary to test out, although I wasn't "sponsored" or required to do a positive review at all!   If you have a lot of regular nail polish that you wish you could find gel "dupes" for, I can say this is totally worth it!

1 comment:

  1. It's a great idea but you can really accomplish this with any gel - no need for a 'special' product ...just a marketing gimmick - a good one though!